Richard N. Farmer and Barry M. Richman Comparative Management Models

Comparative Management models developed by scholars and authorities in this field are discussed below:

Farmer and Richman Comparative Management models

Professors Richard N. Farmer and Barry M. Richman were the two pioneers in comparative management. They emphasized that environments external to the firm do affect management practices.

The very first to identify the critical elements in the management process and to evaluate their operation in firms in different cultures. They also described the environmental factors they considered to have a significant impact on the management process and managerial excellence. These factors, viewed as constraints, are classified as:

  1. Educational variables
  2. Socio-cultural and ethical variables
  3. Legal and political variables
  4. Economic variables

It thus appears that enterprises may. For a time, succeed entirely through non-managerial factors but excellence in management will ultimately make the difference between continued success and decline.

Modified Koontz model for analyzing comparative management

This model encompasses two broad categories of enterprise activities managerial and non-managerial. Either or both can be the casual factors at least to some degree for enterprise excellence. Also, non-managerial activates will be affected by the relevant underlying science or knowledge, just as managerial activities will be affected by the relevant underlying science.

Both types of activities will be affected by the availability of human and material resources and by the constraints and influences of the external environment, whether these are educational, political and legal, economic, technological, socio-cultural, or ethical.

Koontz has shown the factors affecting enterprise excellence and the role of the underlying science through a model that appears below.


Koontz model is more complex than the ones used by previous researchers in the field of comparative management. It is, however, believed to be far more accurate and realistic. This model, rather than viewing factors in the environment simply as “constraint a term that has negative commutation considers them as environmental factors, be they either constraints or opportunities.

For example, in the economic category of factor endowments, a country may be short on natural resources but rich in capital. Likewise, some laws of a country may be restrictive for conducting business, but others may be favorable. Thus environmental restraints could become opportunities in certain situations.

In fact, managers need to adopt a global perspective in leading their enterprises. This requires an understanding of managerial practices in various countries. The Koontz model of comparative management helps identify the factors that contribute to managerial and organizational excellence.

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